A super rare cassette has turned up featuring a recording of Jack White singing ‘One Way Or Another’, a belter of a song by '70s new-wave poster children Blondie.
The rarity was uncovered by Ben Blackwell, who co-founded White’s Third Man Records label and acts as the outfit’s official archivist.
The recording was made when White was still unknown, and working as a session engineer in the ’90s for a band called 400 Pounds of Punk. The group were in the studio doing sessions for a release what would go on to be called (by the handful of people who probably ended up hearing it) ‘He Once Ate A Small Child’.
“The track list is a sparse four songs,” explains Blackwell of the ‘release’, now on YouTube. “An unlisted hidden fifth track is a rude cover of Blondie’s ‘One Way Or Another’ with vocal duties shared by the band’s lead singer Jamie Cherry and one of the session engineers, a then-unknown Jack White.”
“The cassette,” continues Blackwell, “[is] as far as I can tell the rarest physical release of a Jack White performance. And prior to the mention here, the release was completely undocumented. I doubt more than a half-dozen people even knew about it.”
It sure is a scrappy affair. At around 1:07 some numpty fucks up the chords, and the whole thing has rather a drunken end-of-the-session-so-fuck-it vibe. Still, White’s vocals are bloody amazing even, what, two decades ago now.
And here’s a nifty little nugget for your Thursday – despite lead singer Debbie Harry’s famously golden tresses, the reason the band is called Blondie is actually a reference to the name of Hitler’s dog.